ICS Magazine

Armstrong reports depressed third quarter; cites economic pressures

November 12, 2001
Armstrong Holdings, Inc. reported a 6.9 percent drop in third quarter 2001 net sales of $804.7 million from continuing operations as compared to the third quarter of 2000.

LANCASTER, Pa. -- Armstrong Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:ACK) reported a 6.9 percent drop in third quarter 2001 net sales of $804.7 million from continuing operations as compared to the third quarter of 2000.

Third quarter 2001 after-tax earnings were $14.3 million compared to third quarter 2000 earnings of $72 million. Pre-tax charges of $27.4 million were recorded in the third quarter of 2001 related to asset write-downs, impairment evaluations and reversals of restructuring accruals. Excluding these items, after-tax earnings for the third quarter of 2001 would have been $32.2 million.

Hard hit were floor covering net sales of $303.3 million, which decreased 13.1 percent versus prior year due to lower sales volume in laminate and commercial tile products, and the third quarter 2000 IPG divestiture. Operating income of $29.1 million also was down from $35.2 million in 2000. The operating income reduction was primarily due to lower sales volume, and higher selling and promotional expenses.

"While we continue to be affected by the economic downturn, we are investing in our core businesses," said Armstrong chairman and CEO Michael D. Lockhart. "We remain focused on improving the cost structure, product offerings and long-term profitability of the business."

Third-quarter 2001 net sales of $804.7 million were 6.9 lower than in the third quarter of 2000. Floor coverings sales decreased 13.1 percent due mainly to lower sales volume in the Americas and the Installation Products Group ("IPG") divestiture. Building products sales decreased 4.8 percent due to lower sales volume in the U.S. commercial market. Wood products sales decreased 2.7 percent due to lower flooring sales, partially offset by higher cabinet sales. Textiles and sports flooring sales increased 4.6 percent due to higher sales of sports flooring products.

Armstrong Holdings, Inc. (www.armstrong.com) is a global leader in the design, innovation and manufacture of floors and ceilings. Based in Lancaster, PA, Armstrong has approximately 16,000 employees worldwide. In 2000, its net sales totaled more than $3 billion.